JCL land scandal becomes controversial after seven years

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Another privatisation deal has become controversial after a media report claimed several irregularities in the privatisation of state-owned Javedan Cement Limited (JCL) in 2005.
According to the report, the former privatisation commission had sold Javedan Cement Limited (JCL), with over a thousand acres of land, to a private consortium in September 2005 for Rs 4.3 billion, allegedly without properly assessing the value of the company’s massive land assets. It is claimed that the total cost of JCL land, including mining land, is more than Rs 200 billion, 50 times more than the price at which it was sold to Haji Ghani and Shunaid Qureshi. The buyers afterwards closed down the cement plant and instead converted 1,300 acres of JCL land into a housing society called Naya Nazimabad.
It has been alleged that not only the approvals were taken to convert the mining land, but also the fees to convert this land for residential use was not paid to the Sindh government.
It is also alleged that Qureshi and Ghani managed to transfer the majority shares of JCL to Arif Habib and Akeel Karim Dhedhi even though Habib and Dhedhi did not have a tender offer for other shareholders, violating the SECP rules while they took over the company.
When asked about the alleged dubious deal, the Chief Executive Officer of Javedan Corporation Limited (JCL), Arif Habib confirmed that hundreds of acres of land were acquired along with JCL but claimed that there were no irregularities in the process adding, “We had beaten the other bidders in a fair competition so it was our right to procure the company and acquire all its land which after completing all legal documentation which are available with former Privatisation Commission with zero percent violation of rules.”
Habib said there was nothing illegal in ceasing cement business after privatisation of the company as it was the right of the buyer to change the nature of business, adding that the land was purchased on land value not for any specific business.
Dhedhi said that mining was not possible on that particular land, adding that a mining land was converted only after the permission of the chief minister and managing committee.

2 COMMENTS

  1. If AHCL is right, then why is it that no body is willing to buy their share even at a price of Rs. 22/- !. Either the share price is being manipulated by the management, or the share is not worth even at this price.

    Capt. Mansoor A. Mughal

  2. I wonder how much Dhedhi had to grease the palms of the Chief Minister 'Tappi' to convert this industrial asbestos dump into a housing colony without any clean up of the Cancer causing substance or paying the right fees to the Sind government. He did the same with an amenity plot in defence to build his Creek Views/Arkadians project. And of course Arif Habib did the greasing in Pakistan steel mills which the Supreme Court took Suo Moto notice of and reversed. When will their greed end?

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